Drywall and Thankfulness

The call came from my oldest daughter, Kecia. Carol and I had left Colorado Springs Friday morning for a few days of vacation in Arizona, where her four siblings were rendezvousing. It was a welcome break from the snowstorms and blizzard we had recently had.

On Monday morning, my cell phone rang indicating that Kecia was calling me. Her first words stunned me: “Dad, I’ve got some bad news!” Her voice had an emotional tremor to it, and my first thought was that something had happened to one of the grandkids. I waited in the two-second pause that crept by. “There was a leak in your upstairs bathroom and it’s flowed down into the family room. The drywall has water coming out from it and the carpet and couch are soaked.”

“Oh, okay!” She was relieved at my unemotional response. “That’s fine! I’ll call my insurance agent and talk to them about what we need to do.”

“I’m sorry, Dad.”

“Honey, it’s only drywall and stuff. I thought you were going to say that something happened to one of your kids. We can replace drywall, but we can’t replace Jesse, Reagan, or Corin!”

Perspective. Sometimes it’s hard to keep the right one. “Stuff” becomes our focus so often. The commercials I watch on TV usually try to tell me that my life needs more “stuff”…well, that is if I had a TV to watch right now, since the one in the family room got baptized. I guess that would have been a Methodist baptism…it just kept getting sprinkled!

Life situations happen that bring us back to what is important. Saying goodbye to my friend Lessley was more important than picking up sale items at the store. Being about to fly back to Ohio ago to spend my dad’s last day with him was far more important that the inflated plane ticket price. Having a phone conversation with my friend, Dave Volitis, is far more valuable than the time I take to talk with him.

“Stuff” doesn’t amount to a hill of beans when it comes to the inconvenient events of our journeys. The joy and celebration of our family opening Christmas presents will be remembered far, far longer than what the actual gifts were that got unwrapped. People are the gifts. Conversations are the seasoning.

And so I said to Kecia, “Oh, okay!” It was not our idea as to how to get rid of the popcorn ceiling in the family room, but I guess that’s a ripple-effect blessing that will come from this unexpected baptism.

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